Some kitchen appliances are trendy. Some kitchen appliances are classic. Some are here for a season. Others stand the test of time. Remember the avocado greens and the aqua blues that were part and parcel of Grandma’s kitchen? If you bought a home today that will had them, they’d likely be the first items replaced.
But what about stainless steel? Having been the benchmark for stylish elegance for two decades, some say stainless steel is still the “must-have” look because it still appears modern and current. Others are looking to replace them. What’s the blogosphere saying?
Over the past 20 years, folks gravitated to stainless steel because it brought with it a certain cache and inference that “you had arrived,” and were “living in style.” Watch any TV cooking shows and you’ll see these appliances in most of their kitchens, reinforcing the “must have” factor.
According to Refrigerators Reviewedfollow, Whirlpool is attempting to move away from a stainless steel finish. The company has released its “Ice Collection,” which is appears to be a more techie look based on Apple’s designs. The assumption appears to be that consumers who like the tech giant’s look on computers and hand-held devices might also want this style in their kitchen appliances.
Can Appear Cheap?
An apartmenttherapy.comfollow blog appreciates whirlpool’s attempt to bring a new standard to the market, and goes as far to say that as stainless steel has become “so ubiquitous and bastardized. . . it can appear cheap.” This point is reinforced by the fact that many cheaper appliances in the market today claim to be stainless steel when they are indeed not .
From Commercial Kitchens to Home Kitchens
Jennifer Gilmer at Cultivate.com thinks differently and bases her opinion on the fact that commercial kitchens have long benefited from stainless steel’s looks and durability. “Once found only in commercial kitchens, stainless appliances and counters now work in almost any home kitchen,” notes Gilmer. Megan McCardle at The Atlantic feels similarly to a certain extent. “Restaurant kitchens use it partly for historical reasons, and partly because it stands up to a lot of abuse, like the really high BTUs their equipment puts out, better than a painted finish.”
Goedecker’s Home Life’sfollow blog post “6 Trends in Appliance Design You Must Consider Before Buying Your Next Kitchen Appliance,” talks about ‘stainless steel alternatives.’ The article notes that research at GE also has revealed a growing interest in alternatives to stainless steel and that the company has rolled out a less shiny, warmer color that “is still flexible with other kitchen design options.”
So while not conclusive, it does appear the blogosphere is trending toward stainless steel being “less preferred” these days. However, you can’t deny that stainless steel does retain a clean look even after it is subjected to high temperatures, spills and food splatters. And the old adage, “what’s old is new again,” just might apply here for those who choose to hang on to their stainless steel appliances. However, if and when you’re in the market, there’s no reason you can’t mix it up a little with a new GE or Whirlpool appliance when and if those stainless steel appliances need to be replaced.